Are your eyelids sagging as the afternoon wears on? When low energy drags you down, don't look to a candy bar, cup of coffee, or energy drink for a lift. The sugar and caffeine might give you an immediate pick-me-up, but after that quick high wears off, you'll crash and feel even more drained
What you need: a lasting solution to keep sluggishness at bay. Here are 10 fatigue fighters that can leave you feeling refreshed and revitalized.
By Serusha Govender
The Rumor: Your mind-set has no influence on a medicine's effectiveness
You’ve heard of the placebo effect, right? That's what occurs when patients think they’re getting a fancy new drug, but what they’re really getting is just a sugar pill. Then, in a case of "mind over medicine," they start to recover from their ailment as though they'd been taking the real deal.
But the placebo effect has a dark side, too -- a sort of negative placebo effect called the nocebo effect. It’s...
1. Eat your breakfast. People who eat breakfast every morning report less fatigue and stress than people who skip it. High-fiber foods, like hot oatmeal, stick with you longer than a sweet roll or pastry. As the day wears on, they'll prevent you from getting hungry (hunger can lead to low energy).
2. Do a downward dog. Some studies have found that yoga, which uses various postures and deep breathing for exercise and meditation, can be an excellent fatigue fighter.
3. Belt out your favorite tune. Singing gives you a kind of emotional high while it reduces levels of stress hormones in your body. So grab a hairbrush, put on your favorite song, and sing away. If you're at work and don't want to face your co-workers' puzzled stares, you might want to save your vocal stylings for the car.
4. Have a drink of water. Dehydration can leave you feeling drained and fatigued. You don't necessarily have to follow the "eight glasses a day" rule, but you do want to drink enough water to keep your body well hydrated. You can tell you're well hydrated when you don't feel thirsty and your urine is light-colored. Try to get to the fridge or water cooler for a refill every few hours. The walk there will also help you wake up.
5. Go nuts. Eat a handful of almonds or peanuts, which are high in magnesium and folate (folic acid). These nutrients are essential for energy and cell production. A lack of these nutrients in your system can leave you feeling weary.
6. Grab a cinnamon stick. Some people say that just a whiff of this scented spice can reduce fatigue and make them feel more alert. No cinnamon handy? Grab a mint from your bag. Peppermint's sweet aroma is another fatigue fighter for some people. More research is needed to see if and how these aromas actually affect a person's energy level.